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Local photographer Heather Gwinn has a display of her photography hanging at Derry Public Library this month in honor of her grandmothers.

DERRY — A local photographer pays homage to her grandmothers in a new exhibit at Derry Public Library.

Heather Gwinn credits her love of photography and the fine arts to her grandmothers, Marie Madison and Gretta Gwinn, who both died this year within a month of each other.

Gwinn now wants to honor their memories through her photography, putting some of their favorite images on the library walls.

"They were both so inspirational," Gwinn said, "with anything dealing with the arts.

Gwinn followed in her father's footsteps, taking a shine to photography after she received her first camera, a Polaroid, as a holiday gift.

Having a father who was a photographer and constantly snapping photos didn't hurt her own quest to learn.

"I definitely had an interest," she said.

A love of all things artistic continued as Gwinn learned about sculpture and other art forms.

Her "granny" Gretta Gwinn once was a seamstress and costumer designer for the Boston Ballet and managed dance studios in Boston.

"She introduced me to the ballet," Gwinn said. "I took ballet and I loved it."

Her other grandmother, "Grammy" Marie Madison, loved to read, travel and dance.

"She had so many books," Gwinn said. "She never wanted any photos taken of her unless she had full makeup and hair done."

Both women instilled a great love of the arts in their granddaughter.

"They wanted to see everything I did," Gwinn said.

Most of the works in the Derry library display are ones Gwinn said her grandmothers would have loved, from the antique carousel horse head down to a special cherry tree on Crystal Avenue in Derry.

"I picked ones that really made me think of my grandmothers," she said.

Gwinn has her photography and pottery on display a the Coffee Factory at Hood Commons and also at Wiley Hill Pottery in Londonderry.

Gwinn donates portions of her sale proceeds to cancer causes and other projects in memory of her grandmothers.

Her exhibit remains at Derry Public Library through the end of the month. For information, call the library at 432-6140.

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